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Our Portraits

Our museum owns seven Robert Henri portraits including the well-known Queen Marianna painted in Spain in 1898.  They are all presently on display in our gallery.

Bridgeen

1927, Oil on Canvas

On loan from the Collection of Tammy and Larry Paulsen

In Memory of Ike and Shirley Paulsen

L2019.1.3

In the summer of 1927, the Henris stayed at Corrymore and this captivating portrait of Bridgeen was painted there. Of children, Henri wrote in 1915: Feel the dignity of a child. Do not feel superior. Certainly, Bridgeen reflects that view. Like all of the portraits, the eyes look directly at you no matter where you stand in the room. Henri’s signature is on the reverse side of the painting. This portrait was painted about a year and a half before Henri died in 1929 in New York City.

Dutch Girl With Sailor Hat

1907, Oil on Canvas

Museum Purchase 2016 - Gift of Tammy and Larry Paulsen

In Memory of Ike and Shirley Paulsen

2019.7.1

This painting has an interesting history. It was painted at a time when Henri had established himself as the leading portrait painter of his day and was considered a representative example of his work done early in his career while in Holland. It was included in the Robert Henri Memorial Exhibition, organized by his friend John Sloan with The Metropolitan Museum of Art in March 1931, two years after his death. Fifty-four paintings were in the show, most of which were loaned from the Henri estate.

Its more recent history is equally fascinating as it was purchased by the museum in 2016. It was subsequently discovered that it was the favorite Henri painting of Shirley Paulsen, the founder of the Robert Henri Museum and Historical Walkway. Both she and her husband, Ike, died in a tragic accident at the time the museum opened to the public in 1985. Another remarkable coincidence is that the painting was acquired on the same day as Ike and Shirley Paulsen’s wedding anniversary.

MacNamara

1925, Oil on Canvas

Gift of Anonymous Donor

2019.6.1

Robert and Marjorie Henri first visited Achill Island on the west coast of Ireland in 1913. There was a personal tie to the country as Marjorie and her sister, Violet were both born in Ireland. Initially, they rented a house called Corrymore but it was not until 1924, after World War I had ended, that the Henris returned. Then they purchased Corrymore, and spent each summer there through 1928.

 

While on Achill Island Henri painted many Irish children from the town of Dooagh, a small village, including this portrait of Tom MacNamara in 1925. While in Ireland he also painted a few landscapes but primarily portraits in what became one of his most productive times as an artist.

Carl

1921, Oil on Canvas

On loan from the Collection of Tammy and Larry Paulsen

In Memory of Ike and Shirley Paulsen

L2019.1.2

In 1921, Henri, along with his friends George Bellows, Eugene Speicher and Leon Kroll, went to Woodstock, in upstate New York to paint. After looking for subjects he met the Schleicher family and painted their children, including their young child Karl. He described Karl as a little gnome of two and a half. In the end, he painted Karl nine times.

Karl Schleicher became a prominent physicist and mathematician, and worked for prestigious firms, ending his career as oceanographic engineer in the Physical Oceanography Department of the famed Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts.

Gipsy Girl (sic)

1915, Oil on Canvas

Museum Purchase 2016 - Gift of Tammy and Larry Paulsen,

Marcia and Jon Montgomery and Cozad Alfalfa

In Memory of Ike and Shirley Paulsen

2019.7.2

This painting was completed in Ogunquit, Maine in 1915 as Henri had traveled there with his wife Marjorie, and Emma and George Bellows. The painting has also been called Laughing Gypsy Girl but Gipsy Girl was signed on the back of the painting by Henri. This painting is a good example of why Henri loved to paint children for their honesty and purity of expression. This young girl has a beautiful smile, bright eyes and pretty hair. She has lost her front teeth and has yet to get adult teeth.

The Gipsy Girl is a museum visitor favorite and it was the first Henri purchased by the organization. It also has an interesting provenance as it was owned at one time by Delia Spencer Field (1854–1937), wife of the Chicago based department store founder Marshall Field (1834–1906). Then it was passed onto her niece, Mrs. Albert J. Beveridge (Catherine Eddy) (1881–1970), the wife of the United States Senator from Indiana and political ally of President Theodore Roosevelt.